Icons Staff Make Their 2016-17 Premier League Predictions

Leicester City v Everton - Premier League

Such is the nature of Leicester City’s 5,000/1 title triumph last season that it would seem ridiculous to suggest we’re at the starting blocks of the most unpredictable season ever. And yet, with the addition of even more superstars to the most competitive major league in Europe, there are sure to be a whole host of twists and turns over the course of the next ten months.

So, with managerial heavyweights Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola going toe-to-toe in Manchester, just down the road from a Liverpool team beginning to fit Jurgen Klopp’s mould, while Antonio Conte adapts to life in London beside Premier League veteran Arsene Wenger and exciting young boss Mauricio Pochettino, there’s sure to be fireworks.

Trying to make sense of it all ahead of Saturday’s big kick-off, the staff and partners of Icons.com have given their answers to the biggest questions. But we’d like to hear from you on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages: don’t be shy, give us your predictions for the season ahead and check out our fantastic range of signed items from Premier League icons past and present – available right now on Icons.com.

Edward Freedman, Chairman

Premier League winner: Manchester City
Top four: Manchester CityLiverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea
Relegated: Bournemouth, Burnley, Hull City
Underachievers: Arsenal – The Gunners have spent nothing this summer; manager Arsene Wenger should have gone two seasons ago.
Signing of the season: Sadio Mane (Liverpool) – Mane is an honest and hard worker, he’s just the player Jurgen Klopp’s side need right now.

FA Cup winner: Tottenham Hotspur
League Cup winner: Manchester United

UEFA Champions League winner: FC Barcelona
UEFA Europa League winner: Juventus

Random prediction: This will be Arsene Wenger’s last season at ArsenalPep Guardiola will be key to Manchester City‘s success.

Dan Jamieson, CEO and Managing Director

Premier League winner: Manchester City
Top four: Manchester City, Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea
Relegated: Hull City, Watford, Sunderland
Overachievers: Crystal Palace – Alan Pardew produces good attacking teams and if they were to get him, Christian Benteke could be the difference.
Underachievers: Arsenal – This is is the year when Arsene Wenger’s transfer philosophy is exposed as fundamentally flawed.
Signing of the season: Loris Karius (Liverpool) – The goalkeeper may be injured now but he will be a star by the end of the season. Henrikh Mkhitaryan – I liked him before he moved to Dortmund and he should suit Manchester United’s UEFA Europa League endeavours.

FA Cup winner: Chelsea
League Cup winner: Tottenham Hotspur

UEFA Champions League winner: FC Barcelona will get back on top.
UEFA Europa League winner: Sevilla would seem an obvious choice.

Random prediction: Arsene Wenger will not sign a new contract. Manchester United will suffer from squad shuffling and rotation issues as they try to find the right combinations. Pep Guardiola will complain about English football’s congested fixture list within months.

Manchester City v Arsenal - Premier League

Sergio Aguero remains one of the Premier League’s most fearsome strikers, can he lead Man City to the title?

Ben Soley, Sales and Marketing Manager

Premier League winner: Manchester City
Top four: Manchester CityManchester UnitedChelseaArsenal
Relegated: Hull City, Burnley, Swansea City
Overachievers: Arsenal – The Gunners have spent nothing again and will no doubt have 10+ injuries and yet somehow they’ll still manage to finish among the biggest spenders on the globe.
Underachievers: Manchester United – All that money… what a waste of all that money…
Signing of the season: Sadio Mane (Liverpool) – The attacking midfielder was expensive but will be key to Liverpool’s pacy frontline. Nathan Redmond will be useful at Southampton.

FA Cup winner: Liverpool
League Cup winner: Chelsea

UEFA Champions League winner: Bayern Munich
UEFA Europa League winner: Manchester Uni- no, not really! Juventus or Benfica.

Random prediction: I’ll be laughed at for my prediction about Sadio Mane. Despite all the summer spending by Manchester City, Kevin de Bruyne will remain key to their success. 

Margaret Plunkett, Head of Customer Service

Premier League winner: Manchester United
Top four: Manchester UnitedArsenal, Manchester CityChelsea
Relegated: Hull City, Southampton, Burnley
Overachievers: Arsenal – My beloved Gunners will remain in the top four despite not spending umpteen millions on new players.
Underachievers: Tottenham Hotspur – Spurs have an excellent manager but his players will let him down again this season.
Signing of the season: Granit Xhaka (Arsenal)

FA Cup winner: Chelsea
League Cup winner: Liverpool

UEFA Champions League winner: Bayern Munich
UEFA Europa League winner: Atletico Madrid

Random prediction: Sam Allardyce will bring success to England at last.

Wayne Rooney Testimonial: Manchester United v Everton

Can Jose Mourinho bring Manchester United back into title contention with an expensively assembled new-look side?

Alistair Hunter, Editorial Assistant

Premier League winner: Manchester City
Top four: Manchester CityManchester UnitedChelseaTottenham Hotspur
Relegated: Hull City, Swansea City, Watford
Overachievers: Middlesbrough – If only Aitor Karanka can glue the pieces together, there’s genuine talent on Teesside in Marten de Roon, Viktor Fischer and Alvaro Negredo.
Underachievers: Leicester City – The fearless Foxes won’t be as lucky with injuries again this season. Regardless, the Premier League has an inexhaustible love of seeing successful teams fail. The bottom half beckons for Claudio Ranieri’s miracle men.
Signing of the season: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Manchester United) – He’s getting on a bit, yes, but the Premier League will suit this brash, physical phenomenon. That secret yoga routine has kept him nimble.

FA Cup winner: Manchester City
League Cup winner: Cambridge United – At the time of writing, the U’s have just dumped out Championship side Sheffield Wednesday to reach Round Two. Wembley calls…

UEFA Champions League winner: FC Barcelona – There’s no way you keep Lionel Messi, Neymar Jr and Luis Suarez quiet two years in a row.
UEFA Europa League winner: PSV Eindhoven – The Dutch side finish third in their UEFA Champions League group then battle to victory in Stockholm under Phillip Cocu, an achievement that’ll earn the boss a move to a top European side.

Random prediction: Dele Alli will continue his remarkable rise at Tottenham Hotspur. There will be at least one nine-goal thriller as the league’s porous defences are exposed by one of Europe’s finest collection of attacking midfielders.

Harm Jan Deuring, De Hand van Maradona

Premier League winner: Manchester United
Top four: Manchester United, Manchester CityTottenham Hotspur, Chelsea
Relegated: Hull City, Burnley, Bournemouth
Overachievers: Everton’s play will be the opposite of last season’s: not sparkling but very efficient. David Moyes will guide Sunderland to a solid season.
Underachievers: Liverpool‘s inconsistency will result in a paltry mid table finish. Arsenal will fail to qualify for a UEFA Champions League spot and Arsene Wenger will quit next summer.
Signing of the season: Ilkay Gundogan – The German will be a key player for Manchester City from day one.

FA Cup winner: Manchester City
League Cup winner: Chelsea

UEFA Champions League winner: FC Barcelona 
UEFA Europa League winner: Internazionale under Frank de Boer

Random prediction: Harry Kane will again finish the season as Premier League top goalscorer. Injuries will disrupt the debut season of Zlatan Ibrahimovic but at the end of season he will have played an important role at Old Trafford.

Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester United - Premier League

Dele Alli was red hot for Tottenham last season, will his stock rise yet further this campaign?

Chris Jinks, A1 Sporting Memorabilia

Premier League winner: Manchester United
Top four: Manchester UnitedManchester CityLiverpoolChelsea
Relegated: Sunderland, Swansea City, Hull City
Overachievers: Liverpool – The Reds will have momentum with Jurgen Klopp as in charge and the team as a whole will become greater than the sum of all its parts.
Underachievers: Arsenal – The same stagnant strategy with no real leadership on or off the pitch will lead to a finish outside the top four in Wenger’s last season.
Signing of the season: Henrikh Mkhitaryan – The spotlight is bound to be on fellow summer signings Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Paul Pogba meaning the pressure is off the Armenian playmaker.

FA Cup winner: Chelsea
League Cup winner: Liverpool

UEFA Champions League winner: FC Barcelona
UEFA Europa League winner: Atletico Madrid

Random prediction: This will be Arsene Wenger’s last season in the Premier League but he will eventually return to manage here… as England boss.

Scott Hutchison, US Partner

Premier League winner: Chelsea
Top four: ChelseaManchester United, Manchester CityArsenal
Relegated: Burnley, Hull City, Swansea
Overachievers: Middlesbrough – Boro will be this season’s Bournemouth.
Underachievers: Manchester City – Pep Guardiola will find the Premier League much harder than previous stops. Paul Pogba – There’s no way the Frenchman lives up to the hype and his hefty price tag.
Signing of the season: Andre Ayew (West Ham United) 

FA Cup winner: Liverpool
League Cup winner: Manchester United – Jose Mourinho will desperately want to win silverware in his first season at Old Trafford.

UEFA Champions League winner: FC Barcelona
UEFA Europa League winner: Manchester United – See above.

Random prediction: The key for any Premier League team to win America’s hearts begins with the smarts to sign Dortmund’s US wunderkind Christian Pulisic and someone will oblige in the January transfer window.


So, that’s what we think will go down during this season’s Premier League campaign. But what do you think? Send us your predictions by getting in touch via our FacebookTwitter and Instagram pages!

For our full range of Premier League signed products check out icons.com now!



Icons Announce New Official FA England Memorabilia Licence

FA-Licence-Announcement

We are today proud to announce a brand new licence with The Football Association to provide Icons.com and The England Store with Official England Licensed Memorabilia.

Adding to official licences for FIFA World Cup, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, UEFA EURO 2016 and Lionel Messi signed products, we are delighted to bring together a brand new range of superb items signed by many of England’s finest ever players both past and present.

Many of the products in our brand new range mark the 50th anniversary of English football’s finest hour: the 1966 FIFA World Cup. We have signed items from the heroes of that legendary team; Sir Bobby Charlton, Jack Charlton, Sir Geoff Hurst, Gordon Banks, Alan Ball, Martin Peters, Roger Hunt, George Cohen, Nobby Stiles and Ray Wilson. There are team signed shirts both framed and unframed, signed photos, posters, boots, balls and much more among our wide selection.

World Cup Final

Sir Bobby Charlton holds aloft The Jules Rimet Trophy at Wembley Stadium on July 30th, 1966

Each and every product will come with an Official England Licensed Memorabilia Certificate of Authenticity which, where possible, gives details of when and where each item was signed. It’s proof that the product is 100% genuine and 100% official.

So, whether you’re feeling nostalgic about legendary achievements of England’s greatest ever players or excited for a new era of Three Lions football under Sam Allardyce, you’re bound to find an item you’ll treasure.

With exciting new products being added to both sites over the coming weeks and months, keep your eyes peeled for more Official England Licensed Memorabilia from the world’s best. The full range is coming to Icons.com soon but if you can’t wait, check out our products on The England Store today!

For more reasons to buy from Icons.com, visit our Why Buy From Us page.

Follow Icons on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for all our latest blog posts, chat and competitions.



Anatomy of An Icons Signing: Behind The Scenes With FOOTY.com

Untitled-1

Earlier this year we invited our friends from the football price comparison site FOOTY.com to come with us to a signing with one of the world’s best footballers. It just so happened that player was Barcelona‘s Argentinean superstar and global phenomenon Lionel Messi. From the FOOTY.com blog, here’s what Michael Lowdon thought of one our sessions with the world’s best…

As I drove down the A1 in torrential rain to FOOTY.com HQ, another wet day in the North East lay ahead. Or so I thought. By 10pm I was in Barcelona, enjoying a warm night, as the atmosphere of the UEFA Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid spilled out of the Nou Camp and onto the city’s streets. Our friends over at Icons.com had given us an invite to join them in the Catalan capital to get an insight into the workings of a player signing session. The player in question: Mr Lionel Messi.

Home of one of the best club sides in the history of the game, with arguably the greatest player to have kicked a football, the journey to the airport required regular pinching.

Being a frequent visitor to the Icons.com website, I was intrigued to see what goes on behind the scenes at a signing. After meeting Ali and Ben at Heathrow, the first task was to help with checking in of a number of packed suitcases, all of which were full to the brink with Messi memorabilia to be signed. From his latest adidas boot collection to a range of Barcelona and Argentina shirtsUEFA Champions League balls and glossy photo prints, the Icons team took a wide range of products ready for the Argentine’s penwork.

Once we had landed in Barcelona, the breathless Catalan commentary of the night’s match blared through the taxi’s radio, as we used our best broken Spanish to get the driver on our side. The hotel Icons put us up in was a stone’s throw away from the Camp Nou, meaning towards the end of journey the surrounding streets were filled with endless queues of mopeds, carrying relieved and joyous Cules late into the night. After more trolley pushing and the hotel bellboy’s help, we retired to the hotel bar, filled with the debate between fans. A quick night cap and a briefing for the next day’s signing rounded off a day which had started with a quiet, rainy morning in the office.

Untitled-1

FOOTY.com check out our signing photos – a key for authenticity

With signing day upon us, there was no time for a lie in and we were locked away in the hotel’s store room, preparing the cases and deciding what needed to be taken as a priority. It was the “less glamourous side of the signings” I was told, but as a Messi disciple and football merch geek I was like a pig in muck! Selections of football shirts and boots were asking to be jumped into and drooled over. Composed and professional, I managed to hide my excitement, just. As the deadline loomed, we met player liaison officer Jesus, Icons Founder Edward and CEO Dan outside of the Barcelona training ground and dissected Atleti’s defensive resilience, which would help them later progress to the semi final. Bumping into Pep’s superstar agent brother Pere Guardiola and a handful of other important figures, the team were escorted into the training centre to get the session underway.

Messi-Rooney

Messi is delighted to receive a shirt signed by fellow Icon Wayne Rooney

Having been signed to Icons for over a decade, making it one of his longest running commercial relationships, Messi knows what to expect when he’s faced with another Icons memorabilia signing session and he quickly got about his business. Icons exclusively produce the official Messi signed range as part of their license with the Argentine superstar. He breaks from the rhythm of signing to get his photo lifting a signed Wayne Rooney shirt that he’s received from the England captain, smiling with that grin we’ve come to recognise after more than 500 career goals.

The session draws to a close with Messi needed elsewhere – those five Ballon d’Ors won’t polish themselves you know. With yet another successful session in the bag, we retreat back to the hotel bar as the team celebrate. Messi is just one of a glittering list of current players which sign for Icons, including Neymar Jr, Luis Suarez, Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale, Sergio Aguero and many more. Not a bad forward line to have on your books! As the dust settles from the Messi signing, we relax with a meal in the shadow of La Sagrada Familia, unwinding as each Wolfsburg goal against Real Madrid raises a roar from the locals. We could get used to this!

Icons and FOOTY.com join the fans outside the Barcelona training ground

Icons and FOOTY.com join the fans outside the Barcelona training ground

It’s been a whirlwind 48 hours for FOOTY.com, but for Icons it’s simply another day at the office. They’ll do it all again before long, as they met Eric Cantona in Lisbon and Gareth Bale in Madrid before April comes to end. The team also reveal which players are on their radar to sign next, what affects their choice and whether the enigmatic Ronaldinho is within their grasp.

From logistically planned trolley runs to preparing products for smoother signings, it’s all in a day’s work, in the crazy job that is chasing footballers around the world. As FOOTY.com has come to realise, there’s a story behind every signing. We can’t thank Icons enough for inviting us along to their private signing session with the most in demand footballer on the planet. The care and effort they put into organising every aspect of the signing, from their planning, unrivalled authenticity they strive for and their relationships with players is something to be inspired by.

FOOTY.COM is the UK’s leading price comparison when it comes to everything football. We specialise in searching the web to bring you the best prices and biggest savings on products from boots to balls and everything in between. Shop with FOOTY.COM to pay less and play more!

Shop from our full range of official Lionel Messi signed items here.

Follow Icons on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for all our latest blog posts, chat and competitions.



Icons Staff Make Their UEFA EURO 2016 Predictions

A giant replica of the Henri Delaunay trophy, awarded to the winner of the UEFA European Championship, is displayed near the Eiffel Tower on the Champs de Mars in Paris on June 23, 2013 on the sidelines of the launch of UEFA Euro 2016 brand and logo. AFP PHOTO / FRED DUFOUR (Photo credit should read FRED DUFOUR/AFP/Getty Images)

With the opening match of UEFA EURO 2016 fast approaching, the staff and partners of Icons.com have made their predictions for what will happen during the month-long festival of football in France.

UEFA EURO 2016 is set to be the biggest European Championships ever with an expanded field of twenty-four teams vying for glory in France. As an official UEFA licensee, we can hardly wait for the competition to begin. With four home nations competing, including Roy Hodgson’s England and a Gareth Bale-led Wales making their tournament debut, there is much to look forward to. And don’t forget, we have a fantastic and wide range of official UEFA EURO 2016 signed memorabilia available to buy from Icons.com throughout the tournament. Check us out!

 

Edward Freedman, Chairman

Winners: Germany
Runners-up: Spain
Top Goalscorer: Antoine Griezmann (France)
Early Exits: Portugal and Wales

What will happen to England?: Quarter-finals. The Three Lions will reach the last eight of the competition but a quarter-final loss will be manager Roy Hodgson’s final match in charge of the national team.

Dan Jamieson, CEO and Managing Director

Winners: Germany
Runners-up: Croatia
Top Goalscorer: Thomas Muller (Germany)
Early Exits: Portugal and Russia
Surprise Packages: Switzerland, Northern Ireland and Slovakia
What will happen to England?: The last 16. England will scrape through Group B, finishing third, before losing to a good team in controversial but predictable fashion.

Random Predictions: Dele Alli will be voted into the Team of the Tournament. France will set the competition alight but lose in the semi-finals on penalties to Germany.

Above: Icons CEO Dan Jamieson believes England's Dele Alli will make the UEFA Team of the Tournament

Above: Icons CEO Dan Jamieson believes England’s Dele Alli will make the UEFA Team of the Tournament

Ben Soley, Sales and Marketing Manager

Winners: Germany
Runners-up: Spain
Top Goalscorer: Antoine Griezmann (France) and Kevin de Bruyne (Belgium)
Early Exit: Italy
Surprise Packages: Wales and Turkey
What will happen to England?: Semi-finals. Wales will give England a tough game but The Three Lions will still finish top of Group B. After two knockout triumphs, we will eventually run out of steam, losing our semi-final 2-1 AET.

Random Predictions: Cristiano Ronaldo will break Michel Platini’s and become the UEFA European Championships‘ all-time leading goalscorer. Toni Kroos will complete more passes than any other player but Luka Modric will play more key passes.

Margaret Plunkett, Head of Customer Service

Winners: France
Runners-up: Germany
Top Goalscorer: Olivier Giroud (France)
Early Exit: Portugal and Wales
Surprise Packages: Czech Republic and Switzerland
What will happen to England?: Last 16. The lack of a solid back line will be costly once again for England.

Random Predictions: I must be loyal Gooner and say that Olivier Giroud will continue his fine form for France and lead them through a good tournament. Mesut Ozil, as usual, will complete the most passes of any player at the competition.

Above: Could Cristiano Ronaldo become the European Championships' all-time leading goalscorer?

Above: Could Cristiano Ronaldo become the European Championships’ all-time leading goalscorer?

Alistair Hunter, Editorial Assistant

Winners: France
Runners-up: Belgium
Top Goalscorer: Robert Lewandowski (Poland)
Early Exit: Italy and Wales
Surprise Packages: Poland and Croatia
What will happen to England?: Quarter-finals. Roy’s boys will top Group B but scrape through their first knockout test, looking fatigued and lacking depth. Tired and short on confidence, England will come unstuck against a familiar foe in the last eight.

Random Predictions: Poland’s Arkadiusz Milik will earn a big money move from Ajax after impressing alongside Golden Boot winner Robert Lewandowski. It will help usher in a new age for strike partnerships in world football.

Harm Jan Deuring, Social Content Co-ordinator

Winners: Spain
Runners-up: France
Top Goalscorer: Thomas Muller (Germany) and Alvaro Morata (Spain)
Early Exit: Italy and Belgium (QF)
Surprise Packages: England and Wales
What will happen to England?: Semi-finals. England will finally take their revenge on Portugal in the quarter-finals but lose to Spain in the next round.

Random Predictions: The best game of the tournament will be between Belgium and Germany, in which the Belgians will deserve to win but see Germany go through. Paul Pogba will be the Player of the Tournament despite losing in the final to Spain.

Above: Hot tip? Germany's Thomas Muller is fancied by many on the Icons team to win the Golden Boot.

Above: Hot tip? Germany’s Thomas Muller is fancied by many on the Icons team to win the Golden Boot.

Chris Jinks, A1 Sporting Memorabilia

Winners: Germany
Runners-up: France
Top Goalscorer: Thomas Muller (Germany)
Early Exit: Portugal and Czech Republic
Surprise Packages: Wales and Poland

What will happen to England?: Semi-finals. Staying optimistic but also realistic, as long as England can avoid the big guns they can reach the final four. Roy has selected the right players but still hasn’t found a suitable formation.

Scott Hutchison, US Partner

Winners: France
Runners-up: Germany
Top Goalscorer: Antoine Griezmann (France)
Early Exit: Belgium and Italy
Surprise Packages: Republic of Ireland and Austria
What will happen to England?: Semi-finals. I can’t believe that I’m the most optimistic of the Icons bunch…

 

So, that’s what we think will go down at this summer’s UEFA EURO 2016. But what do you think? Send us your predictions by getting in touch via our FacebookTwitter and Instagram pages!

For our full range of official UEFA EURO 2016 signed products check out icons.com now!



England’s Next Big Star! Dele Alli Becomes Icons’ First Summer Signing

zz-dele-alli-icons-signing-session-may-2016_4_1

It took Dele Alli just six months to go from League One side Milton Keynes Dons to England’s next big thing. Six months. Such is the determination and natural talent of Tottenham Hotspur’s fearless box-to-box midfielder, just recently turned 20-years-old, that he has made the step up from third tier terrier to topflight superstar without skipping a beat.

Alli has a composure and assurance on the ball that belies his age and suggests a burgeoning talent some have already compared to Premier League legend Steven Gerrard. With ten goals and nine assists in what has been the mother of all breakout seasons, Alli has been deployed as a defensive midfielder, in a holding role, and shadowed the likes of forwards Harry Kane and Son Heung-Min. For many youngsters looking to forge a long career in the Premier League, this constant shifting and tinkering might have been unsettling. But very little appears to faze Alli.

With this in mind, it came as no surprise to our team that Alli would breeze into his first ever professional signing session, calm, cool and ready to sign our fantastic range of Tottenham and England shirts and photos, Adidas boots and UEFA Champions League balls.

While Alli signed our fantastic range of Spurs photos, we were reminded of his immediate impact on Pochettino’s exciting young squad this season. It was such a huge impact, in fact, that he won the 2015-16 PFA Young Player of the Year award. It was deserved recognition for a season in which the midfielder impressed so many onlookers, including global superstar and England legend David Beckham.

“He’s just jumping on the bandwagon,” a member of his team joked, with a broad smile spreading across his face. It was the first irreverent comment of an easy-going signing session with one of football’s coolest young talents, who joins the likes Lionel Messi Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar Jr and Sergio Aguero in signing with us before the age of 22.

Though Alli‘s Spurs were unable to catch runaway Premier League champions Leicester City – and we can still hardly believe we’re writing those words – the 2015-16 season will be regarded as one of the North London side’s very best. With UEFA Champions League qualification secured for 2016-17 and a feel-good factor around the club, Spurs fans could be forgiven for wishing away the summer.

ICDASS2-Dele-Alli-Back-Signed-Tottenham-Hotspur-2015-16-Home-Shirt HOLDING

But before the club can embark on a new and exciting season, there is the little matter of UEFA EURO 2016, a competition to which Roy Hodgson will take Alli and several of his Spurs teammates in the hopes of chasing continental glory. And there is quiet optimism both in and around the dressing room.

Just days before Hodgson confirmed the 20-year-old’s place in the provisional 26-man squad for this summer’s festival of football in FranceAlli was keeping himself grounded. Adding his signature to this summer’s England home shirt and photos of his appearances against Estonia and GermanyAlli assured us he was still just hoping to make the squad, despite being one of only two players rated by the bookmakers as 1/100 shots to make the plane.

ICDAES3-Dele-Alli-Back-Signed-England-2015-16-Home-Shirt SMILING

That said, EURO 2016 fever is still very much bubbling under the surface. Major international tournaments will never fail to inspire and excite this football-mad nation but we at Icons can already feel a palpable sense of anticipation that this year may just be the year. If the exploits of Leicester and the meteoric rise to fame of our new signing have taught us anything about football in 2016, it’s that nothing is impossible.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves…

 

For our full range of Dele Alli signed products check out icons.com now!

Follow Icons on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for all our latest blog posts, special offers and competitions.

 



Look Who’s Back! Gareth Bale Completes His Fourth Icons Signing Session

icgbws3-gareth-bale-back-signed-wales-2016-home-shirt-holding

Here at Icons.com, we’re proud to say we work with the world’s best footballers. From Lionel Messi to Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar Jr to James Rodriguez, Wayne Rooney, Steven Gerrard, Luis Suarez and, of course, the greats of bygone years; Pele, Diego Maradona, Eric Cantona and many, many more. But no list of the world’s best and brightest can be complete without the most expensive player in the history of the game.

That’s why our team swapped the warmth and sunshine of North London with the dreary grey and rainy skies of Madrid to meet Welsh wing wizard Gareth Bale for yet another exclusive signing session. Arriving in Spain to the news that the race for La Liga supremacy was to get yet tighter after victories for each of the top three, we were far from surprised to find that all the locals wanted to talk about was football. Not that they ever need an excuse.

ICGBRMS10-Gareth-Bale-Front-Signed-Real-Madrid-2013-14-Home-Shirt-SIGNING

Upon hearing that we were in town to meet the 27-year-old Real Madrid winger for a signing, the taxi drivers, barmen and hotel staff who help smoothen our journeys around the world were keen to stress the Welshman’s importance to a team still very much on the hunt for a league and UEFA Champions League double. History beckons for Gareth and his Castilian cohorts. Not only would a UEFA Champions League triumph bring the club the ultimate European glory for the 11th time, a La Liga title would have them move on to a record 33 Spanish championships.

And what with UEFA EURO 2016 on the horizon, it’s no wonder our friend was in high spirits.

To the dulcet tones of Tom Jones, our session began in earnest. Adding his signature to our fantastic range of brand new products, Gareth happily chatted away about life in the Spanish capital, the Premier League’s unlikely title tussle, his love for golf and, naturally, the challenges that lie ahead.Gareth-Bale-Photo-FramesAlthough there is much to look forward to, this was also a great time for Gareth to take a look back on some of the crowning moments of his sparking career. Signing our excellent range of 16 x 12 inch photos, the Welshman was reminded of his six momentous years at Tottenham Hotspur, where he scored 42 goals in 146 matches and won back-to-back PFA Players’ Player of the Year awards and the PFA Young Player of the Year and FWA Player of the Year. When asked about the race for the title in EnglandGareth admitted that although he wants his old club to claim top spot in the Premier League, he can’t help but be swept up in the incredible story that is Leicester City.

After all, this is a man who lives for sport. In fact, much of the signing session was spent discussing his other big passion in life: golf. While continuing to autograph our brand new range of Real Madrid and Spurs shirtsGareth spoke with great passion about his love for the game of golf; his amazement at Jordan Spieth’s collapse at The Masters a few months ago; his joy at seeing a British winner of that hallowed major; and his own experiences on the courses in and around the Spanish capital (the winger’s handicap is six, for those who are interested).

ICGBSB5-Gareth-Bale-Signed-adidas-F50-adizero-FG-RIGHT-HOLDING

“So, do you play any other sports?” Gareth is asked. “Well, football,” comes his cheeky response. We’re starting to get the feeling that Gareth is really loving life at the moment. And what with UEFA EURO 2016 not far off, the Cardiff-born speedster is extremely confident in Wales‘ chances. Laughing away as he shares in some friendly EnglandWales banter, Gareth says he expects his compatriots to spring a few upsets at this summer’s festival of football in France.

Having this season surpassed Gary Lineker to become La Liga’s all-time highest scoring Brit, Gareth has every reason to feel confident. After all, the world’s most expensive footballer is only getting better; scoring more goals, providing yet more stunning assists and coasting past full-backs with his ultra quick turn of pace. In GarethWales has one of the stars of the tournament. So, watch out England.

 

For our full range of Gareth Bale signed products check out icons.com now!

Follow Icons on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for all our latest blog posts, chat and competitions.


Memorabilia signed by Gareth Bale



How To Buy A Genuine Lionel Messi Signed Shirt – Avoiding Fakes & Unofficial Dealers

When searching through Ebay and around the web for a Lionel Messi signed shirt you will be presented with a wide range of items and sellers. Naturally, without the proper experience or research, there can be many potential pitfalls involved in buying signed football memorabilia. So we are here to provide you with some handy tips.

Lionel Messi Official Signed Memorabilia - Signed Shirts, Photos, Boots, Footballs

Lionel Messi at an official autograph signing session for Icons in Barcelona on 27/11/2015.

The most obvious of which is to be sure of the authenticity of the item. Many sellers will tell you a player has genuinely signed their product. But how can you know for sure that you are not purchasing a fake or printed signature? The techniques used by fraudulent sellers can be very convincing and it is not always easy to identify a fake. So, when you buy a signed Lionel Messi shirt from Icons, we try to put your mind at ease by providing you with the following:

  • An Official Messi Signed Merchandise certificate – Icons is the only place you can buy officially licensed Lionel Messi signed memorabilia. All of our products are supplied with a hologrammed Certificate of Authenticity, which provides key information and shows a photo of Lionel Messi signing the item.
  • Photo proof – We are happy to provide a wide range of photos that clearly show Messi at a closed signing session arranged and conducted by Icons.
  • Video proof – Icons have a unique style of authentication video, which showcase both our products and our connection to the players who sign for us.
  • Signing date & location – We know exactly where and when our items were signed and we’re more than happy to disclose this information for the sake of authentication. All our items come from closed signing sessions, ensuring not only the authenticity but also the quality of each autograph.

When you are looking for Lionel Messi signed shirts online, you should use these points as a checklist from which to compare other sellers. If they can’t provide any of these things, ask yourself why not?

More information about Icons Shop Ltd

Icons Shop Ltd is the world’s leading football memorabilia company and Icons is the most trusted brand in the game. Authenticity is everything to us, as it is everything to our customers.

In 2014, Icons launched the first ever individually licensed memorabilia range: the Official Lionel Messi Signed Merchandise collection. We are the only company Lionel Messi and his management team trust to work with and the 2015-16 season marks the tenth year of Icons’ working-relationship with the Argentine superstar. In fact, we signed with him when he had just broken into the Barcelona first team, way back in 2006.

All Icons products come from private signing sessions in which the player is paid a fee for their service. We never, ever accost players outside the training grounds and we never, ever buy products from companies who do this. We deal directly with the players’ trusted representatives. Very often the players will donate the fees to either a charity of their choosing or a foundation to which they are directly associated. And because we have worked with the players and their agents for many years, they trust us and often personally recommend us to one another.

For all these reasons and more, you can rely on Icons as a trusted source for signed memorabilia, so if you’re looking for a Lionel Messi shirt that has been signed by the man himself, we suggest you look no further.

Click here to view all our officially licensed Lionel Messi signed memorabilia.


Memorabilia signed by Messi



Bid For Our Incredible Luis Suarez Signed and Match Worn Liverpool Shirt

Luis-Suarez-(Liverpool)

During his three-year stint at Liverpool, striker Luis Suarez proved to be one of the most electrifying talents to have ever graced the Premier League. Redmen the world over will remember the Uruguayan’s time at Anfield for his all-action approach to the number nine role; his exceptional array of unforgettable goals and performances; and his fierce devotion to the club. To this day, El Pistolero remains a Kop icon.

Why are we telling you this? Well, if you’re a Liverpool fan and you agree with all that, then we have an incredible opportunity for you. For the next three days, we at icons.com are running an auction exclusive to Facebook in which you can bid for a Luis Suarez signed and match worn Liverpool shirt.

That’s right, this shirt wasn’t just signed by the man himself, it was genuinely worn by him during a match, too. And not just any match, either. Suarez wore this particular shirt during Liverpool’s pulsating 3-2 victory over Manchester City at Anfield on April 13th, 2014.

Liverpool v Manchester City - Premier League

Above: Luis Suarez celebrates as Liverpool score during their 3-2 win over Manchester City at Anfield on April 13th, 2014.

It was just one of several extra-special match worn shirts available to buy on icons.com but now it’s up for auction and you can place your bid right now on our official Facebook page.

The 2013-14 Premier League campaign was a memorable one for Liverpool fans, as Suarez and company made fans dream of the title but were cruelly denied over the final few hurdles. Despite the heartache, Redmen will remember a number of incredible matches during that exceptional season, and none more so than this excellent victory over eventual champions Manchester City.

Suarez was crucial that day, leading the line with a typically powerful performance that had the Manchester City back-line on edge throughout the game. Wearing their iconic red home kit with a special edition badge paying tribute to the 96 supporters who died at Hillsborough in 1989, Brendan Rodgers’ team dug deep to produce an emotional victory that few fans at a packed Anfield that day will soon forget.

Luis Suarez Liverpool Shirt

Above: Icons has a long-standing relationship with former Liverpool hero Luis Suarez. Here he signs a Liverpool shirt for us in 2011

Typifying our tremendous relationship with the striker, who has been signing with Icons for over six years now, Suarez later gifted us his shirt from that remarkable game and it could soon be yours.

All you have to do to be in with a shot of owning this amazing piece of sporting memorabilia is place your bid for the shirt on our dedicated Facebook Auction page. If your bid is above the minimum reserve price and it’s the highest of all the bids placed before Sunday March 6th, you’ll win the auction and become the new owner of this very special item.

So, what are you waiting for?

Head over to our Facebook page now and get yourself involved in the auction – which is hotting up with each new bid.

But if all that sounds like a bit too much excitement, you can always just head to icons.com and check out our Luis Suarez signed memorabilia range. We’ve got loads of awesome products available, ranging from signed Liverpool and Barcelona shirts and photos, to signed boots and balls.

Follow Icons on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for all our latest blog posts, chat and competitions.


Memorabilia signed by Luis Suarez